Extreme Conservation Japanese Style

From NPR, Climate Connections:

Motoyuki Shibata isn't a typical Japanese.

He and his wife, Hitomi, don't own a car. They have a solar panel on the roof. They collect rainwater in an old whiskey barrel to water the plants, and they don't use dish soap.

Shibata's biggest luxury is a wooden Japanese soaking tub, which he built himself. He sits in the tub after he has thoroughly scrubbed himself. After the soak, the bathwater is recycled — and reused for washing clothes. The process is facilitated by a simple hookup.

Shibata guesses that about 5 percent of Japanese use a pump to send water from their bathtubs into washing machines.

After the clothes are washed, Shibata does what most Japanese do: He dries his wash on an outdoor clothesline. Most Japanese don't own clothes dryers. Their clothing hangs on television-antennae-like racks that twirl around on their railings.

"You get to see lots of clothes hanging. … Don't see that in America," Shibata says. "Space is very valuable here. If you can do without something, you do without it."

Unfortunately, the rest of the article discusses how Japanese minimalism is giving way to consumerism. ::NPR via ::MNP Green

Tags: Conservation | Japan | Recycling